5 things I did (or wish I did) before baby!

So my sweet little munchkin is now 13 months old and we are slowly (so very slowly) contemplating baby #2. It won’t be soon but I can see him (or her) as a possibility in the next few years. There are some things that I thought I would do before baby L came along and some of them I don’t mind that I skipped (custom baby hangers for each clothing size) and some that I do! So I’m making a list of things I refuse to skip next time around!

1. I premade freezer meals for at least 4-5 dinners. I wish I had done even more! Breakfast was easy enough and lunch really wasn’t so bad either but dinner became the second take-out meal of the day or resulted in a trip to the store as soon as my husband walked in the door. I wish I had stocked up on around 2 weeks worth of dinners. It would have been worth cleaning out the freezer for!

2. I never took pictures of my belly! I think I can count on one hand the pictures I have of me pregnant. If I were a celebrity people would think I had paid someone to carry my little man due to lack of proof. However, I threw up from about week 6 to week 36 of pregnancy so I really didn’t have the energy or desire to try to take cute pictures of me pregnant. What I never considered was that I could have just thrown on the one maternity dress I had and had my husband snap a picture from chest down. No one had to see my face!

3. I didn’t schedule a newborn photographer or take some of the special pictures I had planned. Thank GOODNESS I had my little sister bring my dad’s nice DSLR to the hospital to get some good shots. However, I had planned on having some pictures of just me, my husband, and baby before everyone swarmed in but I sort of forgot about that in the midst of the whole, I just had a baby thing! Next time I’ll give my sister or husband (if I think he’ll remember) a short list of pictures I want taken. Or just hire someone! At the time the cost seemed too much, now I’m wishing I had done it!

4. Asked my mom to come over and help clean the house before hand! My house could have really used a deep clean and I know my mother would have loved to come over and helped me scour tile before our first baby was born. Not that our house wasn’t clean but it would have been nice if we could have really gotten those dust bunnies taken care of before we came home from the hospital.

5. Load up on different kinds of healthy snacks. I was breastfeeding and I was hungry ALL THE TIME. My husband’s cousin gave us some homemade trail mix with dark chocolate and shelled pistachios, there were other things in there as well but mostly I remember that. It was delicious and I had a few handfuls every night in the middle of a nursing session. I’m not sure how healthy it was but it was mostly nuts, some dried fruit, and the dark chocolate. I also ate goldfish, popcorn (light butter), carrot sticks w/ nut butter, apple slices w/ nut butter, and crackers and hummus.

These are the five top things I’m going to remember to do next time. It will be more important that some of them get done, like number 1 and 5 because I’ll have a toddler to take care of as well!

 

Until next time!

 

You can’t leave your baby

I’m not sure why I had the illusion that my son and I would be busy all day long while I was at home with him. I’m also not sure why I thought he’d be busy playing with his toys while I did my Martha Stewart impression and cooked and cleaned and filed taxes (oops). Instead, he wants my attention ALL the time. Except when he crawls away from me. Then its cool. Heaven forbid though that I leave the room or even get up off the floor, even if he is totally immersed in something else.

He can be happily banging one of my wooden spoons against a pot, totally ignoring me, until I get up. Then boy am I in trouble. He immediately begins to wail and crawl over so I can pick him up.

On the flip side though he can just take off whenever he pleases. We’ll be in the middle of building a tower with his blocks and he’ll just take off for another room. Completely out of my sight, not a care in the world. Maybe I should start wailing then and see how he likes it.

Anyway, needless to say it has put a serious crimp in my homemaking plans. Oh well, I’d rather sit on the floor and watch the delight in his face every time he manages to connect that spoon to the pot.

Teething time #1 over?

I think we are finally over the hump on the first two teeth. He has started to settle down again at night and isn’t so grumpy during the day. I swear there for awhile I had a completely different child. I wasn’t sure if I had just lucked out for the first 7 months and gotten this happy little man and this was our new life or if it was just teething. Seems to have just been teething though and he’s back to my smiley boy.

Except now instead of those cute gummy smiles he has two little bottom teeth poking up, they are pretty adorable too!

I’ve also finally moved to putting him down for naps in his crib. He used to just sleep on our bed during nap time but he has gotten far too mobile for that. So now I nurse him while walking around his room and then.. siiigh.. climb in his crib and put him down. Yes, climb in. In my defense I’m about 5’2″ and after we lowered the crib its really hard for me to reach down in there and put him down gently. I’d pretty much have to drop him in. So instead I climb in, rock him in my arms a bit more and then ease him down. Sometimes I end up nursing him side-by-side in the crib if he is really fussy. Definitely some advantage to being short.. I can squeeze in there.

Anyway, I am so glad that teething time number one is over! I am dreading however the next set to come in. Still if we can make it through this.. we can make it through anything.

OMG Teething!

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I was so excited, about 5 months old and we had finally hit a the time where he was sleeping through the night (aka about 5-6 hour stretch) and I could not have been more pleased. Sure, it wasn’t always the same hours and it still wasn’t EVERY night but I could almost count on it. So close enough. Then we went to Mexico and his sleep schedule was trashed but I was still almost getting those 5-6 hours on the reg. But then.. dun, dun, dun.. teething.

Suddenly my happy, sweet boy became this cranky monster that drooled like nobody’s business and didn’t think sleep was worth a second thought. One night his longest stretch of sleep was about 3 hours. Otherwise he was up every hour and a half and that was after not going down until about midnight. Then he slept until 3ish and was up for about an hour before going back to sleep. At this point I couldn’t really go back to sleep and well, let’s just say it was a rough day.

Now he has finally broken the bottom two teeth through and while adorable, I am dreading the next round. Can I do this again? Is there a place I can send him until it’s over? I’d totally come visit once he was medicated. Okay, just kidding. I love my little drooly monster too much to be separated from him for that long. Seriously though, teething sucks. It’s making me question a second child (sorry second child) but isn’t once going to be enough? Probably not, because the second he smiles or giggles or comes in for a snuggle I’m all a melty, gooey mess once again and can’t wait for round two of tiny baby snuggles.

Still.. teething sucks.

Updated Sleep Routine

Right now he is sleeping by himself, on our bed with the baby monitor about two inches from him. It has to be so close because I want to hear any time that kid even flinches. Why? He has finally learned to crawl and I have no doubt he would crawl right off our bed.

The good thing, he is sleeping BY HIMSELF. While that is amazing, I do have to admit he still got put to sleep with me nursing him. Then slowly easing away so I could actually leave him there instead of our usual nap routine, which is him sleeping on me. While that may not be any progress with the whole “sleep-training” it is making me a whole lot happier. I hadn’t realized how desperately I needed time away from him. Not that I really want to be AWAY, AWAY from him but I do need a few minutes without him attached to me in order to pick up the house, work on a grocery list, love on my dogs (or cats), catch up on my recorded shows, etc.

For me, this is progress and I’m happy with it. And to me as long as I’m happy and he’s happy (and his daddy is happy as long as we both are) then that is what works for us.

So co-sleeping will continue, for now.

-Dev

It’s Bedtime Continued

Well, it looks like we are back to co-sleeping for now.

I tried(ish), I really did (not really).

I started out very determined. Then with each tear that determination waned. That and I was really tired and just wanted to go to bed. So my husband and I discussed it and decided since the poor kid has had his schedule wrecked since May due to us house hunting, buying a house, moving, going on our trip, and then getting our other house ready to sell maybe we’ll hold off on the breaking him of co-sleeping. Honestly, it was for my peace of mind as well as the baby’s.

Though I was glad to go on vacation I was also stressed about leaving our little man and then to get back and have to jump right back into house stuff has been stressful as well. Since about the middle of May I feel like we have not had any down time. Every day its something else and at the moment, there doesn’t seem to be any end in sight. Even Father’s Day isn’t going to be a break for my poor hubby. I was hoping to get up, make him breakfast, take him out to a nice lunch, and then probably do something simple at home. Just a nice easy day. Instead because it’s the only chance we have, we are going to have to go out to our other house and do yard work. I’d like to say I’ll go do it for him but after trying to get the entire house up on the market while he was gone to drill.. I’m out of steam. I need to recharge but like I said, no end in sight. At least not at the moment.

Back to the co-sleeping plan though. For now we’re are nursing to sleep and just trying to get on a normal schedule. It’s starting to look like he’s waking up around 8AM, with about a 40min-hour nap every couple of hours until about 5:30PM. Once he wakes up from his afternoon nap he’s up until bedtime at 9PM. So around three one hour naps a day. We haven’t quite got them down with being at the same time but we are getting close.

This is what works for us right now. We decided in a month we’ll reevaluate and if we feel like we need to.. we’ll try something new. For now though, we just want him on a regular and predictable schedule. Which is fine with me, I’ll take keeping my snuggle buddy for as long as I can. At least.. right now.

The Hell That is Bedtime.

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Naptime too but it didn’t fit into the title as well.

Well, my husband and I went on our wonderful trip to Mexico and our poor parents got to deal with our co-sleeping, comfort nursing 6 month old who suddenly found himself without his favorite pacifier. Me. They are rockstars and I love them, especially my mother-in-law who set up with him two nights in a row.

So when we got back we discovered that suddenly we could rock him to sleep, albeit, with some crying and then lay him in his crib and by some miracle he would sleep for a couple of hours. What was this magic?! Unfortunately, I undid their hard work by nursing my little angel to sleep once or twice and suddenly he was not wanting to sleep for a couple hours in his crib anymore.. it was back to needing to be nursed or at least have someone nearby. Thus begins my dilemma of how to get him to sleep without “crying it out”.

All I can think of when he is crying alone in his crib is that he is laying in there by himself and freaking out wondering where his mom is and why he is alone. Am I a sucker? Maybe. Am I going to apologize for how I feel as a mother? No. Even when my own mother laughed at me when I said that I would not let him cry it out, when I explained to her my plan. I. Will. Not. Feel. Bad. I want all mom’s and dad’s to repeat after me, I will not feel bad for worrying about my child. Ever. Now, that being said I do hope that when it comes to my little boy becoming a toddler I can hold back and let him get his bumps and bruises but with the being scared thing, I can’t be okay with thinking my kiddo is scared because I hate being scared and I won’t do that to him.

Back on track though, “sleep training” plan. It will most likely be in between crying it out and whatever is not CIO method because my hubby and I talked about it and even Mr. Tough Guy won’t let him cry it out. I asked, I offered to let him do bedtime/naptime for three days to “cry it out”. He said nope, he can’t do it either.

So we plan on at night giving him his bath, nursing, reading a book, singing him a lullaby, and then putting him down in his crib. We’ll lay him on his back and step away from the crib. If he fusses, let him fuss,  if he cries a little, then I’ll let him do that. If he cries a little more I’m going to pick him up and soothe him before it becomes THAT cry. You know, the one where they are screaming-crying. The one where it takes 30 minutes to soothe them afterwards. Yea, I don’t want to get anywhere NEAR that cry.

That’s the plan at least. Plans change, evolve, get modified and adapt to better usage so we’ll see how it goes.

**EDIT**

First go so far has not been good. We decided since he is used to sleeping with us we would try to not change too much at once and put him to sleep in our bed. We did our bedtime routine, laid him on the bed and he rolled himself over so we patted his back and then the crying started. Then THE crying started and we picked him up too late. So 45 minutes later here I type. It took both of us alternating singing and walking with him as well as me nursing him for him to calm down and go to sleep. We did not let him get drowsy and then put him down. I stood at the side of the bed and sang until he fell asleep on my shoulder. I eased down on my bed and sang for a minute longer. Then I slid him off me and laid him down. Round 1 goes to baby.

P.S. For anyone reading this I do know all the baby rules. I do know all the sleep-training methods. I read. I research. I read some more. I’m doing what feels right to me as a mom and a parent. Don’t judge me and I won’t judge you. I very much back the “to each his own” motto.

-Dev

image: clipartpanda.com